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CATA Students Learn About Meteorology

Ms. Kopchick's students pose with John Ahrens.

Local meteorologist John Ahrens from WSOC-TV, made his annual appearance at CATA in November. He spoke to all the current Earth/Environmental students on climate, storms, and speaking on TV. John, an AMS certified broadcast meteorologist (CBM), is in his element in the center of a storm. During his years as a Meteorologist for WCBD-TV in Charleston, SC, John covered several hurricanes that plowed into the Carolinas including Isabel and Ophelia. He also went down to Mississippi to witness Katrina’s wrath. Romina Palacios commented, “John Ahrens was awesome. I didn’t think that being a meteorologist could be so hard. He was really funny. I enjoyed listening to him and learning about air pressure and storms.”

John described some of his adventures chasing storms in Tornado Alley. Josh Johnson said, “It was cool he had chased so many tornadoes and he learned to never chase a storm in the dark!” Hunter Evans and Meredith Chandler were brought on stage to represent different types of air masses. When they met, John explained the different types of fronts that can occur. “John has a unique way of making everything extremely funny and entertaining. I felt the students were engaged throughout his presentation and learned many things.” said Ms. Kopchick.

John also spent some time talking to the students and giving some demonstrations on the obstacles meteorologists have to go through when on TV. Volunteers were brought on stage to go through a mock broadcast. They discovered how difficult it can be to try and talk when someone is talking to you in your ear. “It really gave me insight on how the news really works and the pressure meteorologists are put under. He was really good at reaching out to us.” observed Jessica Sperry.

Written by: Kortney Kopchick
Posted: Nov 30, 2011 by Deb Christensen

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